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in Reading Market Place
- The first market in Reading was held in St.
- The Abbey wanted it closer to them.
They created a triangular road junction near St.
Lawrence's Church in which to hold it.
- Markets probably began there in the early 13th century. The Guilds
set out rules for all the traders in the Market and could fine those
who didn't follow them.
- The Market became the place to punish crimes. People were humiliated
by putting them on a platform for people to throw rotten food at. They
couldn't run away. They were locked in:
- Stocks for their feet
- The Pillory for their head and hands
- Reading also had a 'ducking-stool'. This was a chair on the end of a
long pole. It was used to dunk bad housewives into the Holy Brook or
the River Kennet!
- People who committed crimes against the King were even paraded
through the town, like:
- During the 1688 Battle of Broad
Street, many of King James II's Irish troops were stationed in the
Market Place but fled when surprised by the Dutch fighting for William